Bear eats grass next to Highway 3 in Manning Park

‘Bear jams’ on B.C. highways bad for people, animals [with video]

Conservation officers have 300 bear conflict calls so far this month, with roadside bear viewing, feeding among problems

Bears are emerging from hibernation around B.C. as another strong tourist season begins, causing collections of often unwary onlookers and creating danger.

Hungry black bears come to roadsides in early spring to eat new grass, and can quickly attract a crowd.

“They cause what’s known as bear jams, where people stop to photograph the bears, look at the bears or feed the bears,” said Chris Doyle, deputy chief of provincial operations for the B.C. Conservation Officer Service.

“The problem with that is that it causes the bears to be habituated to people. It also does cause bears to get hit by vehicles on the highways, because if they are getting fed, they’re going to be attracted to those cars and they may dart out onto the highway quickly.”

Conservation Officers have fielded 300 calls about bear conflicts since April 1. Doyle said the problem is mainly in southwestern B.C. now and will pick up farther north in coming weeks.

A perennial hotspot for bear conflicts is along the North Shore and up the lower Fraser River, extending from North Vancouver to Maple Ridge where housing development abuts with mountain terrain.

Doyle said proper garbage management and use of bear-proof containers will help minimize contact.

With camping season starting, Doyle stressed the need to keep garbage secure.

“Those can be dangerous situations when you have a bear wandering around a campground.”

Here’s a typical tourist video, from someone police hope is parked in a safe spot:

Just Posted

Scammer targeting elderly in Kelowna with broken-down vehicle story

A door to door scammer is in Kelowna, targeting seniors according to Kelowna RCMP

Accident north of Vernon causing minor delays

SUV and semi truck involved in crash at Highway 97 and Stickle Road

Ontario driver rolls car near Vernon

Crash in Coldstream follows reports of erratic driving

City of Vernon supports variances with minimal opposition

Four housing variance permits will bring more than 90 new residences to Vernon

Armstrong seeks public input on cannabis retail shops

Online survey and mail-out to be conducted; public hearing/open house to be held for input

Weekend weather update: Crisp and sunny

This weekend will see lots of sunshine and below season temperatures for the Okanagan, Shuswap and Similkameen.

Kal Rotary fundraiser leads to wheelchair van purchase

The $39,000 awarded by Kalamalka Rotary was instrumental in securing the $56,000 needed.

Canada’s health system commendable overall but barriers to care remain: UN

The United Nations says Canada’s health care system is “commendable” overall but vulnerable groups still face barriers to quality care.

Unique technology gives children with special needs more independent play

UVic’s CanAssist refined seven prototypes aided by $1.5M government contribution

$224.5 million announced for Highway 1 bridge replacement in Sicamous

Transportation Minister Claire Trevena says bridge option will be announced next month

Kelly Ellard’s boyfriend has statutory release revoked

Darwin Duane Dorozan had several parole infractions that found him ‘unmanageable’

Okanagan volunteers reflect on building classrooms in Nepal

Through the charity Her International, the volunteer group built four classrooms

Ontario driver rolls car in Okanagan

Crash near Vernon follows reports of erratic driving

Doctor’s note shouldn’t be required to prove you’re sick: poll

70% of Canadians oppose allowing employers to make you get a sick note

Most Read